All but one of the two dozen people jailed in Colorado Springs while protesting the police-involved death of George Floyd in Minneapolis were from the Pikes Peak region, according to the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office.
Authorities this week said as many as 47 people have been arrested since demonstrations began here Saturday. Of those, 24 were ultimately booked into the El Paso County jail, all Sunday and Monday, said El Paso County sheriff’s spokeswoman Jacqueline Kirby.
The others were apparently ticketed and released, Kirby said.
Colorado Springs police spokesman Lt. Jim Sokolik said he could not provide further details about people who were ticketed.
Of those jailed, 21 were from Colorado Springs, two were from Cripple Creek and one was from Broomfield, north of Denver, Kirby said.
All but one were arrested on suspicion of obstructing a police officer, a misdemeanor alleging that someone “knowingly obstructs, impairs or hinders” an officer, booking records show. If convicted, they could face up to a year in jail and a fine of up to $1,000.
A 22-year-old Colorado Springs woman was jailed Sunday on suspicion of menacing with a deadly weapon, a felony. Police allege that she approached an officer with a hammer and attempted to hit him after being ordered to disperse about 12:25 a.m. Sunday in the 500 block of South Nevada Avenue, an arrest affidavit shows. The confrontation occurred just north of the Police Operations Center, 705 S. Nevada Ave., where demonstrations have turned tense after sundown. The officer was not injured, but was made to fear for his life, according to the affidavit.
In an emailed statement, the woman said, "I did not do what was said," adding that she is seeking an attorney.
Menacing can be punishable by up to three years in prison. Court records show she has no prior arrests in El Paso County.
Floyd, who was suspected of passing a counterfeit $20 bill at a convenience store, died after being pinned to the ground by police officers, one of whom kept his knee on Floyd's neck for nearly 9 minutes while Floyd repeatedly said he couldn’t breathe.
His death has touched off a nationwide backlash, leading to protests across the country, including in Denver, where cars have been overturned and buildings damaged as police responded with arrests by the dozens.
The Colorado Criminal Defense Bar is offering free legal representation to those arrested in Colorado Springs, said Josh Tolini, the head of the association’s local chapter.
Protests during the day have been mostly peaceful, with trouble coming after dark. Police, facing thrown bottles and rocks Saturday night, responded by using tear gas and rubber bullets to repel crowds in a skirmish that unfolded outside the department’s headquarters building and in the surrounding neighborhood. Police also used aggressive measures Monday night to break up a crowd that refused to disperse.
Windows have been smashed at Colorado Springs police headquarters and at the El Paso County Combined Courts building, 270 S. Tejon Ave., and City Hall has been hit with graffiti, which has been cleaned up.
Colorado Springs Mayor John Suthers and the El Paso County Board of Commissioners have indicated support for those who protest peacefully.